Last October Chevrolet Performance announced the “Silverado Race Truck.” Fielding the Silverado as a new entry in the Best in the Desert Series doubled the size of Hall Racing’s Chevy Performance contingency. It also marked another huge investment by Chevrolet into off-road racing in factory stock classes. No other automaker has fielded a team or raced their own trucks in the highly restrictive stock racing class. Now Chevrolet is backing two trucks in two stock classes through one team.
In essence, the Hall Racing Silverado #1230 (as it is officially known) is a high tech test bed for Chevrolet’s future off road focused fullsize pickup and aftermarket performance parts. It’s a strategy that has worked very well over the last four years with the Hall Racing ZR2.
The Hall Racing ZR2 #7330 has been used to develop Chevrolet Performance Parts that you can buy at your dealership today. Through race after race of punishment Chevy engineers worked with Hall Racing to engineer and perfect performance upgrades like body lifts, and long travel suspension systems. What started out as pre-production parts that Hall Racing would fine tune with every race have evolved into factory backed and fully warranted upgrades that are available for your ZR2 at any Chevy dealer.
In fact, you could build a functional twin to the Hall Racing ZR2 yourself using Chevrolet Performance Parts, BFGoodrich Tires and off the shelf safety equipment. No other brand gives their performance truck owners that ability.
It’s easy to take the development path of the Hall Racing ZR2 and apply it to the Hall Racing Silverado. So easy, a quick glance at the suspension on the truck confirms Chevrolet’s strategy. Take everything that made the Colorado ZR2 a success and apply it to the Silverado.
Today, that’s a body lifted Silverado with huge DSSV Multimatic Performance shocks and large BFG tires. A “Silverado ZR2” if you will… and with rumors of a Silverado “ZRX” off-road Raptor fighter close to production, it’s not hard to connect all the dots. Just as the ZR2 was development vehicle for parts, the Silverado is a development truck for a new model and maybe a little bit more.
So when Chevrolet asked if I was interested in being one of three people to ride along in the Hall Racing Silverado during this year’s Mint 400 Limited Class Race, I had no other answer but a resounding YES. The video above shows how our experience went.
So my brother Josh and I packed our bags and headed to Las Vegas during the first week of March for the 2020 running of the famous Mint 400 off-road race. Our plan was to spend a day preparing for the race by off-roading a Trail Boss and a pair of ZR2, followed by a day embedded with Hall Racing during the Mint.
Day One: Off-Roading in a Trail Boss & ZR2 at Nellis Dunes
Assisted by the Las Vegas Rock Crawlers as our guides, Chevrolet Performance lent us the keys to a Silverado Trail Boss and two Colorado ZR2. We explored the Nellis Dunes Recreational Area for about four hours. While we played it safe, the baked in ability of the Silverado and the Colorado ZR2’s was impressive. Just air down the tires and go have fun.
Day Two: Riding Along In The Silverado Race Truck
The next day we embedded with Hall Racing at the Mint 400. Since I was entering the truck at during the middle of the race, I spent a lot of time getting familiar with the truck’s second row racing seat and harness. I had to wear a full racing suit, helmet and a protective HANS device.
After I was comfortable with my gear and the team had hurried off to stage for the race it was time to wait. One lap of the Mint 400 was 106 miles and I would enter on Mile 68 and ride until the end of Lap one while the team was topping off their tank.
My time in the back seat of the Silverado Race truck was intense. The DSSV shocks allowed the truck to go far faster than you might expect. The race course was highly rutted and a challenge to navigate. But for all the Mint 400 threw at the Hall Racing Silverado our only problem was a loose skid plate at the end of lap one.
A course that would have chewed up and spit out any factory vehicle, Raptor included, was only of mild inconvenience to the Hall Racing Silverado. Anyone who scoffs at being impressed in a truck completing a race like this has never experienced the devastation of the Nevada desert. In my single hour in the Silverado we passed over a dozen broken down race vehicles on the side of the course. Yet the Silverado Race Truck took me all the way back to the start/finish.
If the suspension being developed on the Silverado Race Truck is anything like what will end up in production, and it will be, off-road enthusiasts are about to get a very special vehicle.
Even better, Chevrolet Performance and Hall Racing will continue to work on amazing off-road accessories for your future Silverado. Proving their worth one race at a time.
Look for the Silverado Race Truck to become the Silverado “ZRX” or similar in 2022 or sooner. GM-Trucks.com will be on top of any developments.